When Baby M went through his therapy evaluations and we found out he would need three sessions a week on top of A-Man’s two sessions a week, I’ll admit we went into a bit of a panic. Packing up all the kids, finding sitters, and going to the town over for therapy five times a week? That was just too much.
We were lucky that our therapy office worked some miracles and A-Man and Baby M are seen at the same time Mondays and Wednesdays. Tuesdays, Baby M has his third therapy while Mr. C and A-Man are at their biological dad’s.
But what did this mean for homeschooling? It would have been all too easy to justify putting school on hold for Mr. C until we got everything figured out with his brothers. He’s about a year and a half ahead academically, so it was really tempting to say we’d just start up again next year. That’s not really fair though. We really didn’t want to ignore Mr. C’s needs just because they aren’t screaming quite as loud. So how do you fit it all in?
Homeschooling and Special Needs Therapies
Let Go of the Public School Schedule
Chances are you are not homeschooling just to bring the public school system home with you. You absolutely do not need to do school from 8 am to 3 pm with a half hour lunch and a half hour of recess. You don’t have to school Monday through Friday! Homeschooling should fit your life schedule. For us, that means that we don’t school Mondays and Tuesdays because that’s when the boys go visit their biological dad. We homeschool mainly in the afternoons because our mornings are almost always too busy. Find a routine that works for you!
Learn to Appreciate Life Learning
Mr. C and I are both workbook learners. At the beginning of our school year I was super gung-ho and got books for every subject that would be perfect! Little did I know that by Spring we would be spending at most and hour or two on actual book learning. We are completing handwriting every day because I believe it’s a truly practiced skill, and Mr. C can do it independently. We are also focusing on reading and language for our book learning. Science and history books have taken a backseat to Sid the Science Kid and talking about historical events. Just the other day Mr. C and I had a whole conversation about voting, presidents, and democracy that stemmed from an episode of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. Life learning works!
Choose Your Focus
For us, our focus right now is phonics and reading. We’re way farther in math than we are in reading because of different start dates with the books, so we put math on the back burner for a while. We’ve also taken breaks to focus on working on the heart. Mr. C has learned so much in the last few months about how everyone was designed different and everyone has different abilities. It has been such a blessing to see the way he sees God in every single person he meets. Really just decide your focus, where you want to spend the majority of your time, and let the rest slide for a bit. Mr. C will survive if we don’t get to much in his botany book until Summer. That’s the beauty of homeschooling! Maybe he’ll be in 2nd grade math, 1st grade phonics and language, and 3rd grade science when our next “year” starts. That’s okay! Things will sort themselves out.
Overall, like with everything, have some grace. You’re doing the best you can, and that’s all you can do.
How do you fit homeschooling in around special needs therapies (or whatever activities you’ve got going on)?
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